New Monitor Setup

I’ve talked before about making personal computing more personal and did this in a fun way with my Saitek Flight Switch Panel [1, 2] and have being enjoying it greatly. There’s been another part to this too.

Since last year I’ve been hunting through local verge/bulk rubbish collections for old monitors and found four to add to my setup. A week ago I finished my collection and set up all the cables and adaptors and now my desk looks like the following:

A photo of Az from behind, lit entirely by the glow of a collection of seven monitors. Six are strewn across their desk, one sits below it, all showing various desktops and terminals.

“The wired might actually be thought of as a highly advanced upper layer of the real world. In other words, physical reality is nothing but an illusion, a hologram of the information that flows to us through the wired.” - Serial Experiments Lain.

That photo was taken by my lovely spousy-boo, Nikki and I love it so much.

There are now five monitors attached to my desktop PC:

  • 1x 4k 27" Dell
  • 2x 1080p 23" Dells
  • 2x 1280x1024 4:3 19" monitors

The first three monitors are my main ones, things that are actively in use for heavy interaction. The latter two are usually movies, Spotify, or view/read focused monitors where I can put stuff that is important but doesn’t need immediate interaction as frequently.

There’s also two monitors attached to some Linux machines:

  • 1x 1280x1024 4:3 19" monitors
  • 1x 19" 16:9 monitor

The 4:3 monitor under the desk will be hooked up to my project to track hack attempts on a cloud service and the last one is part of a new project that’s been on my mind for a while to show a dashboard with near real-time information. Currently it displays my active GPU temp and a few other stats which is fun to monitor as I switch between various different games and projects. I’ll probably put up another post that focuses on how it works.

Altogether though, I feel really happy about this setup. It feels chaotic and over-the-top but it also feels like mine. It feels like something I’ve put together over the years that does what I want, the way I want. I cannot stress the sheer joy in having a computer setup that you feel enjoyment using, if you’re the kind of person who needs to use a computer regularly for your work and hobbies.

Change the backgrounds, set up weird bindings, run a Rainmeter skin and custom dock. But make it yours.